October 3, 2009 Comments Off on Review of Patriot Act: American tamil doctor plaintiff in appeal
The Supreme Court has agreed to review a civil liberties dispute over the government’s power to criminalize “support” of a terrorist organization.
The justices on Wednesday accepted review of a key provision of the 2001 Patriot Act, and whether it threatens free speech rights of those who would assist non-violent activities of designated groups.
Another plaintiff is an American physician who wanted to help ethnic Tamils in his native Sri Lanka. Much of the island nation is controlled by the rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, which has also fought for decades to carve an independent state. The government claims the Tamil Tigers have “used suicide bombings and political assassinations in its campaign for independence, killing hundreds of civilians in the process.”
HLP and a group of Tamil doctors say they merely wanted “to provide their expert medical advice on how to address the shortage of medical facilities and trained physicians” in the region but “they are afraid to do so because they fear prosecution for providing material support.”
September 12, 2009 Comments Off on Malaysian Indian sues officials over LTTE link charge
The Times of India : Malaysian Indian sues officials over LTTE link charge
KUALA LUMPUR: Firmly denying any links with Sri Lanka’s Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), a Malaysian Indian legislator on Friday sued senior government officials for defamation.
M. Manoharan, a legislator from Kota Alam Shah in Selangor state and a former legal advisor of the now-banned Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) said neither he nor any of the other Hindraf leaders had links with the Tamil Tigers.
He filed an RM 100 million ($28.67 million) defamation suit against Inspector General of Police Musa Hasan, Attorney General Abdul Gani Patail and media organisations.
The two senior officials had told the court of the LTTE links to justify the detention of Manoharan and four others under the stringent Internal Security Act (ISA) in December 2007.
A fortnight before their arrest, the five had led a protest rally in Kuala Lumpur to protest discrimination against Tamil Hindus who form a bulk of the nearly two million ethnic Indian population.
The rally attracted 10,000 people. It was declared illegal and forcibly dispersed.
Detained for two years, Manoharan and his colleagues were released on bail in April this year by Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak who called it “a conciliatory gesture”.
Manoharan had got elected to the Selangor assembly while in detention, but was not allowed to perform his duties as a legislator.
“Ours is a people’s struggle, we are not terrorists and neither are the movement’s main members P. Uthayakumar, P. Waythamoorthy, S. Ganabathi Rao and K. Vasathakumar,” he said.
Manoharan added that his detention over allegations that he was linked to the Tamil Tigers was absurd.
“Never have I visited Sri Lanka and our movement has no links with the LTTE. It is a figment of the government’s imagination,” he said.
Manoharan said he now needs to catch up with his family, look for a house in Klang and resume his legal practice, The Star reported.
Sri Lanka’s Tamil rebels were defeated in May in a major military campaign that left the LTTE leadership dead.
May 15, 2009 Comments Off on Not all Tamils are Tigers
Guardian UK : Not all Tamils are Tigers
The international community is dithering over the humanitarian crisis in Sri Lanka because of its need to condemn rebel fighters
“There are two possible reasons why this is happening. First, that the Tamil Tigers are terrorists, and civilian deaths are unfortunate collateral damage in Sri Lanka’s domestic war on terror. Or, second, that killing Tamil Tigers is a ruse for killing Tamils, and that the government is using the terrorist line to spin a sinister agenda.
While the international community grapples with Sri Lanka’s insistence that it is the former, a depressing body of evidence points towards the sinister. There is the censorship – areas restricted to journalists including the “safe” zone where undercover reporters have to sneak out news of horrors. There is the witch-hunt for dissenters – Sri Lankan bloggers report that the government has now set up a hotline to report on those who question the war, and Unesco just awarded its World Press Freedom prize to Lasantha Wickrematunge, the latest Sri Lankan journalist to pay the ultimate price for free speech. And there is the state-sponsored terror – Desmond Tutu and Jimmy Carter argued last year that Sri Lanka should be struck off the UN human rights council for its abuses: internment, torture and abductions…
…Not all Tamils are supporters of the rebels – I’m certainly not. Despite all the flags, I know that many of us who are turning out in Parliament Square have a humanitarian agenda, not a pro-rebel one. But if we want the crisis to stop, we’ve got to realise that there’s no use condemning the Tigers and trying to save Tamils, because in the eyes of the Sri Lankan government, we seem to be one and the same. The hope of the civilians facing mortal harm and starvation in Sri Lanka is that the world will not watch in silence while their lives are destroyed – and will not be fooled by the constant carping about the ills of the Tigers as a justification for throwing every last grain of humanity out of the window.”
May 2, 2009 Comments Off on Sri Lanka army website hacked: defence ministry
AFP : Sri Lanka army website hacked: defence ministry
The Sri Lankan army’s website has been targeted in a “cyber terrorism” attack by Tamil rebels, the defence ministry said, and replaced with gruesome photos of apparent victims of the civil war.
The http://www.army.lk site had been removed by hackers who replaced it with photographs of civilians said to have been killed in military action in the northeast of the island.
April 13, 2009 Comments Off on Protesters have moved to Bradfield Park by Milson's Point station
April 9, 2009 Comments Off on SBS : An interview with Sri Lanka's High Commissioner in Australia
April 8, 2009 § 1 Comment
ABC Radio Australia: Sri Lankan Tamil’s Melbourne protest
Sydney Morning Herald: Protest closes CBD block in rush hour
SBS Photo Gallery: Tamil protests
NineMSN: Tamils rally in Sydney over rebel deaths
Macquarie National News: Protest causes Sydney CBD peak hour chaos
ABC News: Tamil supporters stage protest in Melbourne CBD
Brisbane Times: Tamils rally in Sydney over rebel deaths